Lebanon-a geography of hostages

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The history of Lebanon is one of continuous sectarian conflict since the 19th century. The 17 ethnic and religious communities live side by side in the same settlements or regions, sometimes peacefully but more often in conflict. In order to avoid sectarian conflicts in which one community finds itself in a ' hostage situation' within the territory of another community, this paper proposes to establish in Lebanon 12 ethnically pure cantons. The 12 cantons would be divided into seven Muslim cantons and five Christian cantons, and their creation would be accompanied by population exchanges among the new cantons. Gerrymandering would be necessary in order to draw boundaries for ethnically pure cantons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-220
Number of pages22
JournalPolitical Geography Quarterly
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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